my baby's hearing
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getting started: what is early intervention?
building our support team
building conversations
building concepts
positive parenting
learning from my family
learning through play
read with me
getting ready for school

language and learning
  little boy in diaper

One of the most amazing and important accomplishments of infancy and early childhood is the development of language. Babies start to say their first words around one year of age…and in no time (around age 4), they know more than 1500 words and begin telling stories. Language skills developed during the preschool years serve as a wonderful foundation for learning in school.

Children with solid language skills often become strong readers and writers. When a baby is born with a hearing loss, this process of developing language can be delayed. Such delays can be prevented or reduced through early detection of hearing loss and intervention. Family members can encourage a baby's language, listening and speech during natural daily routines. The following section includes important information about early intervention, development of communication with your baby, ideas for nurturing language development, and support opportunities for the whole family.

Getting Started: What is Early Intervention?
Families of children with hearing loss have many questions about early intervention. In this section, you will find answers about when and where to get started, infant /family services and specialists, technical terms, home visits, and support services.

Building Our Support Team
A vital part of becoming parents of a baby with hearing loss is finding the best support for you and your whole family. In this section, you will find the reasons for developing a strong system and ideas for finding the support that is right for you.

As parents you have the right and responsibility to make decisions. In this section, you will learn about the decisions that you will find yourself making and how to get the information you need to make appropriate decisions for your baby and family.

Building Conversations
As parents, you want to have conversations with your baby. Your baby wants to communicate with you. Whether your child is hard of hearing or deaf, this section will have ideas for communicating in the modality you have chosen to use.

Building Concepts
Your baby wants to ask you a lot of questions about the world. You want to answer the questions. Everything is new. Everything needs words. In this section you will find suggestions for giving your baby answers to questions about the world.

Positive Parenting
Babies need help to develop the security and appropriate behavior that will let them grow up happy and responsible. In this section are some effective parenting techniques. Learn how they can be adapted to fit the communication needs of your family.

Learning from the Family
Babies with hearing loss need a whole family to support their learning. This section has suggestions for helping even extended family members to include your baby in every aspect of daily life.

Learning through Play
Play is a baby's work. Through play, babies learn to master the physical and social environment. In this section, you will learn ways to help your deaf or hard of hearing baby participate in many of the play experiences babies need in order to grow.

Read with Your Child
Children whose parents read with them tend to have good language and to do well in school. Reading with babies who are deaf or hard of hearing requires special skills. This section will present the techniques, challenges and rewards of reading with your child.

Getting Ready for School
Deaf or hard of hearing children attend school in a variety of settings. In this section, you will find out about regular settings that are adapted for children with hearing loss, and settings that are specifically designed for children with hearing loss.